Encyclopedia of Arkansas Minute

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The Encyclopedia of Arkansas Minute features the history of Arkansas as told through the entries of the Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture. The Encyclopedia of Arkansas is a program of the Central Arkansas Library System Butler Center for Arkansas Studies.

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Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Sentinel Of Freedom

Jul 2, 2019

Arkansas artist Adrian Brewer was initially reluctant to accept a commission on what became his most famous painting. Little Rock insurance man Clyde E. Lowry approached Brewer about painting the American flag “when the wind had died down and the gentle folds took their natural place.” Brewer had a thriving practice painting commissioned portraits of prominent Arkansans, but ended up accepting Lowry’s offer.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Matt Rothert Sr.

Jul 2, 2019

A Camden furniture merchant was responsible for a phrase we see every time we open our wallets. Matt Rothert, Sr., was born in Indiana in 1904 and moved to Camden twenty years later. He founded the Camden Furniture Company, serving as its president until he retired in 1975. But his true love was coin collecting, a passion he developed when he found his father’s old coins.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Grand Army Of The Republic

Jul 2, 2019

Union Civil War veterans formed a fraternal organization after the war that had a surprisingly strong presence in Arkansas. The first Grand Army of the Republic post was founded in Illinois in 1866, and African American veterans formed some of the earliest posts in Arkansas around the same time.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Ozark Golden Wedding Jubilee

Jul 2, 2019

While it was likely a stunt to promote tourism in the area, the short-lived Ozark Golden Wedding Jubilee did recognize long-term marriages as couples renewed their vows. Sponsored by the Rogers Chamber of Commerce, the jubilee celebrated fifty-year marriages while also recognizing a newlywed “honor couple” that would get a week-long honeymoon in Rogers.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Arkansas Married Woman's Property Law

Jul 2, 2019

Arkansas was one of the first states to recognize a married woman’s right to own property, but it took a half century. Common law held that a married woman’s property would pass to her husband, which concerned fathers who feared their daughters’ bequests could be squandered by worthless husbands. The Territorial Legislature recognized women’s rights to own property in 1835, but the law did not pass into statehood. Governor Archibald Yell vetoed a property law in 1840, fearing that giving women rights would destroy the family.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Anti-Miscegenation Law

Jul 2, 2019

Arkansas law barred interracial relationships from the territorial period up to the twentieth century, when the U.S. Supreme Court overruled such laws. The Arkansas General Assembly banned miscegenation in 1837, but the law was laxly enforced because of the small number of free blacks in the state. That law was overturned during Reconstruction, and many interracial couples married during the period.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Marion Noble

May 6, 2019

Marion Noble, born at Garner in White County in 1911, was one of three Arkansas men who served in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade during the Spanish Civil War.

Noble’s father was a railroad worker known for treating black and white colleagues equally. After he lost his job, he opened a car repair business where young Marion worked as a mechanic.

Encyclopedia of Arkansas Minute: Kessler Vs. Strecker

May 6, 2019

Kessler vs. Strecker, a 1939 deportation case, reached the Supreme Court of the United States and continues to be cited in cases involving undocumented immigrants.

Hot Springs restaurant owner Joseph Strecker immigrated to the U.S. in 1912 and applied for citizenship in 1933. He was arrested for having donated sixty cents to a Communist presidential candidate the year before and ordered deported.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Clay Fulks

May 6, 2019

Born at Pearson in Cleburne County in 1880, Clay Fulks became a notable figure in the limited history of radical leftism in Arkansas.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Turney Wood Products

Apr 15, 2019

Arkansas was once home to one of the largest manufacturers of church furniture in the world. Claude H. Turney opened Turney Wood Products in his Harrison garage in 1946, building furniture for the nearby First Church of the Nazarene.

Using red and white oak harvested in the Ozark Mountains, Turney Wood Products built furniture that was going into one thousand churches annually by the mid-1960s when the firm boasted of being “the largest exclusive church furniture manufacturer in the western hemisphere.”

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Peggy Sue Bosmyer

Apr 15, 2019

With her 1977 ordination at Little Rock’s Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Dr. Peggy Sue Bosmyer became the first female Episcopal priest south of the Mason Dixon Line.

Born in Helena on July 26th, 1948, Bosmyer had served as a deacon in Pine Bluff and an intern curate in Little Rock prior to her ordination. While some said women priests would “tear apart the Church” and one Episcopal leader stated that “we’ve never had a woman priest back to year one,” Arkansas Bishop Christoph Keller Jr. said Bosmyer’s priesthood emphasized “not the maleness but the humanity of Jesus Christ.”

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas: Jonesboro Church Wars

Apr 15, 2019

Actor-comedian turned evangelist Joe Jeffers brought turmoil to Jonesboro’s Baptist community, leading to brawls, gunfights and a fatal shooting.

Encyclopedia of Arkansas Minute: Quatie Ross

Mar 1, 2019

A victim of the Trail of Tears, remembered as “a noble-hearted woman,” is buried in Little Rock’s Mount Holly Cemetery. Elizabeth “Quatie” Ross was born in seventeen ninety-one in the old Cherokee Nation, now part of Georgia.

She married Cherokee chief John Ross in 1813 and after a tribal faction signed the Treaty of New Echota, ceding their rights to their ancestral lands in the southeastern U.S., she and their children accompanied him on the passage to the Indian Territory.

Encyclopedia Of Arkansas Minute: Mary John

Mar 1, 2019

Mary John was born a slave in the late seventeen-eighties in Louisiana but would lead a remarkable life in Arkansas.

She was sold in 1811 to James Scull, an American settler at Arkansas Post. Though she was his slave for nearly thirty years, Mary also was able to work on her own and on September 13th, 1840, she purchased her freedom from Scull for eight hundred dollars. She parlayed her reputation as an excellent cook into a business, opening a renowned hotel and tavern at Arkansas Post.

Encyclopedia of Arkansas Minute: Freda Hogan Ameringer

Mar 1, 2019

Freda Hogan Ameringer was born on November 17th, 1892, at Huntington in Sebastian County. The daughter of a founder of the state’s Socialist party, she was a dedicated socialist by her early teens.

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